Long Island: Hempstead
The Town of Hempstead is among the three towns also known as civil townships located in Nassau County, Long Island, New York. There is a total of twenty-two incorporated villages completely or partially in the town.
The combined population of the entire township, as of the 2010 Census, was 759,757. For the incorporated village, there were just 53,891 people, 16,358 households, and 11,312 families. The median income for a household in the village was $53,333 and the median income for a family was $54,910. Males had a median income of $33,421 and $31,979 for females. These numbers are specifically for the village of Hempstead and not the township as looking at the township overall raises these numbers significantly. For instance, income for a household in the town was $84,362, where the median income for a family was $96,080. Many of the residents commute daily to New York City for work.
The Town of Hempstead is the largest township in the United States, having 22 incorporated villages, over 65 parks and marinas, and 2,500 miles of city, county, state, and federal roads. The latitude of Hempstead is 40.706N. The longitude is -73.619W. It is in the Eastern Standard time zone. Elevation is 56 feet.
In 1644, the town was first settled following the establishment of a treaty between John Carman and Robert Fordham, an English colonist. Even though they were from an English colony of Connecticut, the New Amsterdam still issued them a patent after they had purchased land from the local natives. The Town of Hempstead was the oldest English settlement in Nassau County that has evolved to be larger than 6 states. The former name of the town was Heemstede which was taken from the Dutch city. Some people believed that the origin of the name include referencing a law during colonial times, requiring all farmers in the town to alternate one year, growing their cash crop and hemp to replenish the soil. This method of soil regeneration is called cover cropping. During the American Revolution in 1784, the loyalists in the south and the American sympathizers in the north caused a split into North and South Hempstead respectively.
Hempstead has a number of institutions of higher learning such as Hofstra University, New York University and Nassau Community College and many more. The Town of Hempstead Department of Parks and Recreation is one of the largest municipal park systems in the United States. It has a total of 65 parks and marinas that offer numerous activities for all ages including sports, cultural arts, concerts, aquatics, and recreation.
With more than twenty-five museums and historical sites located in the town, the Cradle of Aviation Museum, is most popular. The Cradle of Aviation is a state-of-the-art facility with a collection of more than 70 aircraft and spacecraft that immerses visitors in the history of aviation. There is also a sanctuary that offers some of the finest wildlife and nature areas in the country. The town’s greatest resource is its proximity to the Atlantic Ocean. Among the miles of pristine beaches in the Town of Hempstead, lies the famous Jones Beach where over eight million people visit each year.